June 16, 2023 By Michael Dorgan
A family-run Greek supermarket business that has been a staple of 31st Street in Astoria for nearly 40 years will shutter on Sunday, June 18, although the business is expected to reopen in the fall at a new location close by.
Titan Foods, known for its large selection of goods imported from Greece, will close at 25-56 31st St. since its lease will expire at the end of the month. The family business has been an Astoria mainstay for years, locally famous for its Greek cheeses and olives as well as its baked goods and other Greek delicacies.
The supermarket also prepares hot and cold foods as well as ready-made meals.
The company has been forced to shutter after its landlord sold the 31st Street building earlier this year.
The 7,500-square-foot site in which the building stands was sold to Aniska31 Realty, LLC in February, according to city data. Aniska31 Realty, LLC also purchased two lots to the rear of Titan Foods — including a single-family home — with the total cost of all the sites coming to $10.5 million, according to city data.
It is understood that the supermarket and the home will be bulldozed and a large apartment building will go up in its place.
The sale of the site left Titan Foods scrambling to find a new home. Titan Foods is in the final stages of negotiating a deal on a new location and will make an announcement on the matter soon, according to Anna Mastoras, who is the daughter of the supermarket’s owners Kostas and Stavroula Mastoras.
“We are staying within the neighborhood and not going too far from where we are now,” Mastoras said. “We will be relocating, not closing. We’re just getting an upgrade and seeing it as a good thing.”
The business announced the closure via post to its Instagram page on Thursday. There are also notices – in both English and Greek – plastered on the front doors of the building. On Friday, the supermarket was bustling with regulars looking to stock up on goods to get them through to the fall.
Mastoras said that while the supermarket is closing, the company’s online store is stocked full of items that customers would have found in the store.
“Everyone’s a little panicked right now, but we do have the website, so we’re going to be supplying everyone during the time period that we’re closed,” Mastoras said. “We’re still going to be here, it’s just a small break.”
The 31st Street store is the only Titan Foods location, although the family owns a food distribution business in Suffolk County, Long Island, called Optima Foods, Mastoras said. The family also operates a bakery called Optima Foods at 23-52 48th St., she said.
Titan Foods was established a few doors down from its current location in 1984, at 2550 31st St., which is now a CrossFit gym, Mastoras said.
She said the company expanded into its current location in the early 1990s and has been there ever since. It is instantly recognizable for the orange roof slates on one side of the building while two large flags — one of Greece and one of the U.S. — fly above the front door.
Mastoras said her family is proud to have served the neighborhood over the last four decades and they are excited to continue that tradition into the future.
“We’re happy to provide everyone with fine Greek food and just be able to give them a taste of Greece,” Mastoras said. “It is a bittersweet feeling ,but it’s OK, we’re looking forward to something new and something better to come. I’m sentimental [and] emotional, but excited.”